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  • Writer's pictureNekaelly Sandstra

Looking back at the 3E Internship

Has it really been a year since the 3E Internship Program began for Alysia, Dennis, ChristyAnn, and I? We were blessed to spend this last year at the Youth Farm studying God’s Word, growing in our personal walk with God, serving the community in a variety of ways, going on a mission trip to Nicaragua and Mexico, serving at summer camp in leadership roles, and ultimately having our lives transformed and shaped for what God has in store for us. The time has flown by, but what we have learned and experienced will never be forgotten.

Being in Nicaragua opened my eyes to a different culture and way of living: to live simply and peacefully, and not be rushed to accomplish everything right away. The majority of Nica people live in poverty and face struggles we can hardly imagine, but they live richly in heart, enjoying the day-to-day process of living in community with one another. The others and I arrived expecting to bless and minister to them, but in the end they blessed us so much more by demonstrating the love of Christ and giving generously to us of all they had. I was personally challenged in many ways, such as communicating and leading worship in another language, living in a concrete house in a poverty-stricken community, and seeking to help people build homes in circumstances that seem hopeless. My greatest challenge, however, was to surrender everything I thought I knew and to hold on to the one thing that is certain: God. And that has changed everything.

If I could put the internship into one word, it would be humbling. I stepped into this program with confidence that I would grow and be developed to serve in further ministry, ready for anything to come. Stepping out, I have grown and developed immensely, but also am humbled by realizing all the ways I have yet to grow, being content that God can use me wherever I am at. Growing in faith is a long, transformational journey, which means that the challenging, gut-wrenching, and painful circumstances that we each undergo are part of the process of becoming more like Him. But the beautiful thing is that Jesus has shown us mercy in our struggles, for “He humbled Himself and became obedient to death- even death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:8) Through the internship God has humbled me to seek Him with all of my heart, to follow Him with every aspect of my being, and to serve Him in ministry with my whole life. It was a humbling, transformational, and unforgettable adventure that I would recommend to all young adults seeking to know God and know themselves more deeply.

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